Bishop George V. Murry, S.J., Bishop of Youngstown, commented on the lawsuits filed May 21 by dioceses, Catholic universities, Catholic health care systems and Catholic charitable organizations against the Obama Administration for violating freedom of religion by requiring virtually all health-care plans in the United States to provide abortion-inducing drugs, sterilization and contraceptives. Named as defendents are HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner and their departments.
“This lawsuit defends the free exercise of religion without government interference,” said Bishop Murry. “Religious freedom is rooted in the dignity of every human person. It is a cornerstone of basic human rights and is necessary for the flourishing of a just society. Religious liberty is about more than just worship. It is about allowing Americans with a faith conviction contribute to the common good of society in accordance with that faith. The HHS mandate makes it nearly impossible for religious institutions to contribute to the common good.”
The particular plaintiffs in this lawsuit were chosen by legal counsel at the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. They are representative of dioceses and Catholic institutions across the nation. The Diocese of Youngstown unambiguously supports this action as an important means of protecting the rights of all believers under the Constitution of the United States, which guarantees the non-interference of government in the practice of religion.
For more information, please contact the media offices for the Archdiocese of New York or the Archdiocese of Washington.